MOSCOW (MRC) -- PlasticsEurope, the association of European plastics manufacturers, says that it has launched a co-funded project with the European Commission’s LIFE Program, dubbed LIFE Blue Lakes, in response to the increasing risk posed by the concentration of microplastics in European lakes, reported Chemweek.
The project is coordinated by Legambiente, an Italian environmental association, and brings together local and international partners, aiming to reduce and prevent the presence of microplastics in Italian and German lakes, PlasticsEurope says.
The average concentration of microplastics per square kilometer has increased by more than 400% in the waters of Lake Garda, Trasimeno, and Bracciano in Italy in just three years, harming water quality, biodiversity, and potentially human health, according to PlasticsEurope. Results of data tracking their presence shows that despite the different morphological and ecosystem characteristics of the three lakes, the concentration of particles found in the lakes rose from 135,188 in 2017 to 549,020 in 2019, PlasticsEurope says.
“Plastic waste is unacceptable in any environment. Our participation in the Blue Lakes project reflects our commitment to finding solutions to some of our most pressing environmental issues, in particular marine litter. We know that tackling the problem at source is crucial and to be truly effective requires multi-stakeholder collaboration at local, European, and international level,” says Virginia Janssens, managing director at PlasticsEurope.
LIFE Blue Lakes will focus its actions on three Italian and two German lakes "to design and test standard protocols on pilot areas, with the aim of developing and implementing good practices extended to other European lake communities,” PlasticsEurope says.
PlasticsEurope says it is actively involved in the ongoing scientific assessment of the potential impact of microplastics on human health and the environment.
As MRC informed previously, EU Plastic Tax has recently approved by European Council: A Danger for the EU Single Market & Recovery. The plan foresees a EUR0.80/kg levy on non-recycled plastic packaging waste to be paid by member states into the EU budget.
We remind that an estimated 11 million metric tons (MMt) of plastic waste enter the ocean every year and this will almost triple by 2040, to 29 MMt, if immediate and sustained action is not taken, according to a newly published in-depth report.
According to MRC's DataScope report, PE imports to Russia dropped in January-June 2020 by 7% year on year to 328,000 tonnes. High density polyethylene (HDPE) accounted for the main decrease in imports. At the same time, PP imports into Russia rose in the first six months of 2020 by 21% year on year to 105,300 tonnes. Propylene homopolymer (homopolymer PP) accounted for the main increase in imports.